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Question Number: 20959

Law 9 - The Ball in and out of Play 3/11/2009

RE: Rec Adult

Gevin Gregory of Woodburn, OR USA asks...

This question is a follow up to question 20472

How come this gets called wrong so often. I mean we are talking the tangent of the ball needs to be outside of the outer tangent of the line correct (as opposed to just where the ball touches the ground). It seems that even professional soccer they will call it out if they can see green between the ball and the line but that is not necessarily out at all. Why is this call so often botched?

Answer provided by Referee Gary Voshol

In my experience, I don't see this as much of a problem, except for inexperienced AR's and club lines. Some of them may be so eager to impress the referee with their calls that they over-anticipate and call the ball out before it is completely out.

Not being on the sidelines in any professional games, I can't comment on what those AR's have seen.

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Answer provided by Referee Michelle Maloney

If you can see green between the line and the ball and the AR is in the correct position, the only possible correct conclusion is the ball has completely left the field.

Seeing green there means the plane of the outer edge of the ball and the plane of the outer edge of the line don't meet.

In defense of ARs, I would note many fields have terrible lines, and an in/out decision is often a best guess, with a lean to 'in' rather than 'out'. Most ARs are also right on top of the touchline, so they have the best and most accurate view, even though they are supposed to stand a foot or so off of the line.

I would suggest that perhaps you don't have the best view, and thus are not qualified to say whether the ball was in or out, unless you have the AR's view.

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Answer provided by Referee Chuck Fleischer

Could it be you are watching a televised match and are listening to the commentator demonstrate his wisdom? If that's the case be careful applying what you hear as what the Law says because in many cases it is flat wrong. With regard to a ball in or out of play on a touch line or goal line the only person on the planet who knows for sure is a properly placed assistant referee! That's it!


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